Overworking Yourself is Like Over-boiling a Kettle ?!


As you may have noticed already (or maybe not), I like to use quite a lot of strange analogies when sharing the philosophy of Nourishing Routes and helping to grasp it.

This week, I have thinking a lot about kettles. Yep, you heard me correctly, that essential piece of kitchenware that allows you to make your comforting cup of tea or coffee...

The reason a kettle springs to mind is because I have been thinking a lot about boiling points. In human terms, I think of our boiling point as the time where we have reached our energy potential. We have placed so much energy into a certain task at hand and now, before we go any further, we must switch off.

For a kettle, unlike most human beings, it knows exactly the point to switch off (usually when the water reaches 100 degrees Celcius - unless you have one of those really cool kettles where you can adjust the temperature to your desired type of tea).

Going over 100 degrees Celsius isn’t really going to help the kettle, or any hot beverage the hot water is used for. Water that is too hot will likely spoil whatever you are making, as well as probably leading to overheating and eventually breaking your much loved kettle!

Humans on the other hand, as you might have experience of too, sometimes don’t know when to switch off. We have probably all experienced times when we have gone out full force, placing all of our energies into something, or not making time to wind down and switch ourselves off. Whether that be at work, helping another person or browsing through social media, we live in a culture that is awake 24/7, with all sorts of opportunities that prompt us to stay alert and keep on working - sometime obsessively.

Many of us also experience pressure of others or wanting to please others to the extent that we are willing to exhaust ourselves in order to meet certain deadlines or expectations.

For myself, I remember nights staying up till 3am, trying to finish off an assignment, skipping meals to ensure I could complete another task, or flit from one event to another without giving myself a break. It didn’t last forever though, as it wasn’t too long before I began to crumble physically and mentally under the pressure.

While we may meet such deadlines and expectations in the short term, we really aren’t doing our happiness or wellbeing any good in the long run of our precious lives.